Barbados – The Path to Becoming the First Carbon-Neutral Small Island

The main issues are that the island has a very narrow resource base, a yearly guarantee of bad weather from tropical atlantic cyclones that can, and have devastated Caribbean economies, societies and natural environments and further more climate change. The solution is to become carbon neutral whilst maintaining a protected environment, a stable society, and a sustainable and resilient economy. This commitment is rooted in the National Energy Policy 2019-2030 of Barbados, which includes among others: substantially expand renewable energy (RE) generation, especially from solar, wind and biofuel sources,
and phase-out fossil fuel based generation; shift society towards greener mobility by encouraging greater uptake of electric or hybrid vehicles (EVs); improve energy conservation (EC) and efficiency (EE) through phase-outs of inefficient lighting and appliances, and establishing standards to promote high-efficiency products; incentivise decarbonisation, by providing technical and financial support, and instating fiscal measures (grants, loans, tax rebates and exemptions, import duty exemptions) etc. Some of the benefits are over 2,000 independent power producers now generating 50 MW from solar power – reaching almost 20% of the potential solar capacity, 15+ Government buildings retrofitted with solar photo-voltaic systems & energy efficient fixtures. Another 100 buildings planned. Government’s procurement policy now prioritizes purchase of electric or hybrid vehicles, where possible. Government-owned public transport fleet currently includes 49 EV buses. Plans to acquire an additional 10 buses will increase the share of electric buses in the fleet to about 85%. Over 350 EVs are now on the road etc.

Keywords: GHG emissions and climate change mitigation, Reducing transport emissions from travel, Low-impact mobility, Public transportation, Renewable Energy, Responding to climate risks, Climate change information electric vehicle, solar panels, fossil-fuel free, carbon neutral, National Energy Policy, energy conservation and efficiency, decarbonisation

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